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Orphan Trains

Between 1854 and 1929 the United States was engaged in an ambitious, and ultimately controversial, social experiment to rescue poor and homeless children, the Orphan Train Movement. The Orphan Trains operated prior to the federal government’s involvement in child protection and child welfare. While they operated, Orphan Trains moved approximately 200,000 children from cities like New York and Boston to the American West to be adopted. Many of these children were placed with parents who loved and cared for them; however others always felt out of place and some were even mistreated.Continue Reading »

Children’s Bureau – A Brief History & Resources

Written by Angelique Brown, MSW. The early 1900’s was a time in which the United States was attempting to change it stance on child labor and end abusive child labor practices. As more advocates started to address the issue, they recognized that the federal government was not yet fully engaged in addressing the physical or mental well-being needs of childrenContinue Reading »

National Child Labor Committee

In the late 1700′s and early 1800′s, power-driven machines began to replace hand labor for the making of most manufactured items. Factories sprung everywhere, first in England and then in the United States. The owners of these factories found a new source of labor to run their machines — children.Continue Reading »

Child Labor Reform and the U.S. Labor Movement

A timeline of child labor reformContinue Reading »

Child Labor in New York City

Written by Mary Van Kleeck, 1908. “The following brief report gives the results of a joint investigation made during the months from October, 1906, to April, 1907, into the labor of children in manufacture in tenement houses in New York City. The National Consumers’ League and the Consumers’ League of New York City, the National and New York Child Labor Committees, and the College Settlements Association co-operated in the undertaking.”Continue Reading »

Child Labor

“Historically, ‘child labor’ is defined as work that deprives children of their childhood, their potential and their dignity, and that is harmful to physical and mental development. However, not all work done by children should be classified as child labor. Children or adolescents’ participation in work that does not affect their health and personal development or interfere with their schooling is generally regarded as being something positive.”Continue Reading »

Steele, Carrie

Carrie Steele Logan (1829–1900) – Founder of the Carrie Steele Orphan Home in Atlanta, GAContinue Reading »

Carstens, Carl Christian

Carl Christian Carstens (April 2, 1865 – July 4, 1939): First Executive Director Child Welfare League of America. Written by Emma Octavia LundbergContinue Reading »

Children’s Bureau

Written by Kriste Lindenmeyer, Ph.D., Professor of History, University of Maryland, Baltimore County. The establishment of the U.S. Children’s Bureau in 1912 marked a high point in the effort by many Americans to improve the lives of children.Continue Reading »

Child Welfare League of America

“Formally established January 2, 1921, the Child Welfare League of America (CWLA) has been one of the most important national organizations in the history of American child welfare. The creation of the CWLA coincided with the end of the progressive era and the beginning of another: an era dedicated to establishing national policies and standards combined with developing and disseminating program materials and practices to affiliate members thereby raising the quality of child caring services throughout the nation.”Continue Reading »

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